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Effects of Caffeine on The Body

Updated on April 19, 2010
coffee powder and tea bags
coffee powder and tea bags

Caffeine Beverages: Coffee and Tea

Caffeine beverages are one of the most consumed beverages in the world today. The two most good examples are coffee and tea. Both tea and coffee plants are members of the evergreen family and they can develop into fairly large trees. Coffee is made from a bean while tea is made from the leaves of a plant (Camelia sinensis). Caffeine is the most potent chemical component in tea and coffee, coffee has more caffeine than tea, while tea has more antioxidants per cup than coffee does (especially Oolong, green, and white tea). Other popular drinks that contain caffeine are soft drink, energy drinks, chocolate milk, cocoa, sunkist orange and even some sweets and over-the-counter medications also contain caffeine. According to some clinic, 200 – 300 milligrams of caffeine or 2 – 4 cups of coffee a day should be fine for most people but 500 – 600 miligrams a day you may want to consider cutting back and an exteme amounts of caffeine can even kill you. The recommended way to cut back is to do it slowly, this is to avoid you from getting headaches, irritable and feel tired or lousy.

Decaffeinated Tea and Coffee

Do you know that a decaffeinated beverages is not really free of caffeine?, the process of decaffeination for tea and coffee only removes about 96% of the caffeine, and the same thing happen for decaffeinated soft drinks. Coffee machines that use drip method with fine ground normally produces the highest amount of caffeine (110 – 150 milligrams per five ounce cup). For tea, the caffeine content is affected by how long it is brewed, the tea leaf cut and the type of tea used. The effect of caffeine in tea normally takes longer than coffee to enter the blood stream. When it comes to health benefits, any types of tea will normally beat coffee.

Fast Facts About Caffeine

Caffeine is one of the world's most widely used drugs (it is called as a drug because it stimulates our central nervous system, causing increased alertness). In its pure state, caffeine is a crystalline white powder and it tastes very bitter. This most popular drug belongs to a family of drugs called methylxanthines and can be found in 60 different plants, 90% of Americans consume it in some form every day. Caffeine can also be produced synthetically and added to beverages, food, medications and supplements. Caffeine also causes a person to urinate (pee) more because it is a diuretic (whether this will lead to dehydration or not, it’s still not clear) and may cause our body to lose calcium.

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Caffeine and Nicotine

Other stimulant beside caffeine that are widely ingested is the nicotine found in cigarettes. Sometimes caffeine is added to some tobacco products. Both nicotine and caffeine are addictive and classified as secondary stimulants, they only produce an incraesed energy level but not a feeling of intoxication. Caffeine is still the most widely used stimulant in the US. Stimulants increase heart rate, respiration and blood pressure. An overdose of stimulants can result in convulsions, chest pains, paralysis, coma, and death. Nicotine usually acts as a stimulant for new users, people who consume regularly claim that it relaxes them. Similar with the case of caffeine, two-thirds of teenagers who try hard to quit consuming nicotine will eventually fail. Nicotine withdrawal symptoms include irritability, anxiety, insomnia, headaches, depression, difficulty concentrating, mood swings and changes in appetite.

It is said that the caffeine effective length of time can be decreased by smoking. However, the use of both caffeinne and nicotine at the same time initiates an intense feeling of alertness and can make people feel more awake in the mornings. The use of both drugs together can additionally activate greatly the brain’s reward system.

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    • Susan Wong profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Wong 

      8 years ago

      thanks for dropping by, im glad that you like the post :)

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 

      8 years ago

      there is only one thing that has more of an effect on me and that is your amazing hubs - please keep us educated, entertained and enlightened - and I will stop drinking coffee!!

    • Ladybird33 profile image

      Ladybird33 

      8 years ago from Fabulous USA

      Wow, I didn't know this, I am a coffee drinker and I love coffee. Thanks for sharing this important piece of info for us all!

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